Metro Manila-based Sibuyan residents gathered outside the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) for an overnight vigil rally, demanding the immediate cancellation of Altai Philippines Mining Corporation’s Mineral Sharing Production Agreement (MPSA).
“Kami ay narito muli sa harap ng DENR National Office upang ipanawagan sa mga opisyales ang agarang pag kansela sa MPSA ng ALTAI dahil sa mga lantarang paglabag nito sa mga batas na ipinapatupad ng kagawaran at ng gobyerno, hindi pa kasama ang iba pang mga panlilinlang nila sa mga tao at sa gobyerno para lamang sa kanilang compliance.” said Alfreo Borda Pascual, President of Bantay Kalikasan ng Sibuyan (BKS).
Pascual further emphasized the people’s opposition to mining in Sibuyan, citing its potentially detrimental effects on the environment and the livelihoods of local communities.
“We say No to Mining in Sibuyan Island as mining will destroy its natural beauty and biodiversity considering that it is one of the last ecological frontiers of our country. The health and livelihoods of our people, including the indigenous groups, will be put at risk. We cannot allow this to happen,” said Pristine Garcia Member of BKS.
The BKS, together with other concerned groups, has consistently called for the cessation of mining activities on the island. They have submitted numerous letters to the agency, expressing their firm stance against mining in Sibuyan. Taking a proactive approach, the BKS organizes monthly activities to raise awareness about the mining issues faced by the island.
Sibuyan Island, renowned as one of the last ecological frontiers in the country, has become a focal point in the ongoing struggle between environmental preservation and mining interests.